Matthews wins points classification at Paris-NiceSun 15 Mar 2015
Multiple grand tour stage winner Michael Matthews has won the points classification at the 2015 Paris-Nice.
The 24-year old, who also won stage three and wore the yellow jersey for the following stage, went into the final day with a stranglehold on the classification, six points ahead of his nearest competitor Alexander Kristoff (Team Katusha).
With just two unlikely scenarios able to spoil the party, Matthews secured the jersey following the closing time trial.
“It’s been a dream of mine to win the green jersey in a stage race like Paris-Nice,” Matthews said.
“We went into the week optimistic about where my form would be as the first race of the season. The first days we tried a few things and got racing back in the legs and on the third day we nailed it, we took the stage win with a really good effort by the whole team.
“From then on I knew I had a good chance at keeping the green jersey, so we tried to get as many intermediates and points at the finish line as we could.”
Sport director Laurenzo Lapage was pleased with the week’s racing, particularly the teamwork shown to deliver Matthews to his stage and jersey win.
“We finished with a stage win and the green jersey and I don’t think we could have reached better,” Lapage said.
“The green jersey is a result of teamwork and because we were there everyday with Bling, it’s a definitely a sweetener to go home with.”
The 2015 Paris-Nice closed with a 9.6km individual time trial.
22-year-old Simon Yates was ORICA-GreenEDGE’s top finisher on the difficult uphill race against the clock in 17th position whilst Australian time trial champion Richie Porte (SKY) won the final stage to claim his second Paris-Nice overall victory.
“Simon came in with general classification ambitions, yes he got sick and he wasn’t were he wanted to be, but it was important for him today to practice like he was in contention because that could happen in the future for him.”